Tangy and sweet Cranberry Muffins! These Upside-Down Cranberry Caramel Muffins are bursting with delicious Fall flavours!
The title of this recipe makes me super happy. The thought of warm caramel oozing over upside-down muffins makes my heart shine. These muffins are cake like – they don’t really dome like other muffins to (goodbye muffin top! And for once it’s the truth ;), soft in the batter, tart from the cranberries, and sweet from the caramel. Well balanced one might suggest.
You can see the cranberry-caramel bubbling over the sides of each muffin in the tin (below) and that the muffins are quite flat on top. The cranberries create little craters to hold the caramel in and when the muffins are released from the pan, the caramel glides all over the muffins. It is pretty messy to release them from the pan! The photo above is mere seconds after I took them out.
This recipe is adapted from a New York Times recipe by Melissa Clark, her Upside-Down Caramel Apple Muffins to be exact. While I love the sound of that recipe, I really wanted to showcase cranberries in a muffin and give my kids more exposure to them since I don’t make cranberry sauce (gross).
Two out of the three kids loved them. My husband and his office also enjoyed them thoroughly. They are comforting, soft, and festive, warm right out of the oven. They will keep for 3-4 days in the fridge. I didn’t freeze them (gone too quickly!) so I don’t know how these muffins would handle that.
I think you could easily add some oatmeal to this recipe for some substances and for generally feeling more healthy about them overall. Most fruits will work – any that go with caramel to be exact. Pears would be out of this world in my opinion, especially if you add a touch more vanilla extract and take out the cinnamon.
More easy kid-friendly muffins:
Upside-Down Cranberry Caramel Muffins are a snack the whole family will love. And they give all the festive feels in a perfect cranberry muffin recipe.
- 2 cups cranberries, about 227 grams
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 8 tbsp 1 stick, unsalted butter
- 1 pinch kosher salt
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1 tbsp baking powder (not a mistype, it's 1 tablespoon)
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 3/4 cup sour cream, creme fraiche, or yogurt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract, preferably vanilla bean pasta or good quality extract
Preheat oven to 375° F.
Generously grease or spray with non-stick spray a 12-cup muffin tin.
In a large skillet over medium-high heat, stir together cranberries, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 8 tablespoons butter and pinch salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until cranberries begin to soften and the butter begins to turn red, about 15 min. Distribute cranberries and caramel among the muffin cups.
To make the muffin base, in a large bowl whisk together flour, 3/4 cup brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
In a separate bowl, whisk together 8 tablespoons butter, eggs, sour cream and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix gently together until smooth. Distribute the batter on top of cranberries.
Bake until the muffins are slightly puffed and beginning to brown, about 20 to 22 minutes.
Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then carefully turn out onto a flat surface.